Casa Batllo, Barcelona

Casa Batllo, Barcelona (must see)

Casa Batlló – one of the highlights of Modernism and Catalan Art Nouveau architecture in Barcelona – is largely regarded as the ultimate masterpiece of Antoni Gaudí. Originally built in the 1870s, it was redesigned by Gaudí in 1904 in an astonishing renovation project that turned this relatively ordinary mansion into a work of art. Lovingly referred to by the locals as the “house of bones” for its almost bone-like balconies, or the “house of the dragon” for its roof resembling a dragon’s humped and glossy scaled back, this is certainly one of the weirdest-looking residential buildings of Europe.

There are not many buildings in the world that seem more like a living thing than an inanimate object, yet Casa Batlló achieves exactly that and its design feels almost alive. Any time – day or night, there is a small crowd outside, standing on the pavement staring up the wavy-shaped facade covered in a mosaic of fragmented colored glass and ceramic discs. Gaudí's use of light and color is wonderful, especially in the ceramics, and the curves soften the hard materials quite brilliantly. The building's interior is swirly and curvaceous, but to see it with your own eyes, you'll have to pay an admission fee which is somewhat steep compared to other attractions in Barcelona.

However, if you decide to go in, make sure to take a free audio-guide, as it really helps understand the historical and artistic context of the building. Now that all the rooms are devoid of furniture, this smart guide enables you to imagine what it was like when the original furniture and lighting were in place. As in the case of Casa Milà, Gaudí designed every single bit and piece here, right down to the very door handles, so as to ensure they fit in seamlessly, complementing the entire form and function.

Despite the presence of an elevator, visitors are encouraged to walk up the stairs to the rooftop, so as to soak up the atmosphere with its intricate textures and shapes – glass walls and tiles. At the end, up on the roof, visitors are rewarded with a scenic view of the area, as well as the up-close encounter with the roof itself including, of course, the signature twisted and tiled chimney pots looking as if they were brought in from a land far, far away...

Tip:
For a fee, you can get a photo taken on the small balcony at the front of the building (on your way down from the roof); both a printed copy and e-copy.

Opening Hours:
Daily: 9am-9pm (last entry: 8pm)

Want to visit this sight? Check out these Self-Guided Walking Tours in Barcelona. Alternatively, you can download the mobile app "GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities" from iTunes App Store or Google Play. The app turns your mobile device to a personal tour guide and it works offline, so no data plan is needed when traveling abroad.

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Casa Batllo on Map

Sight Name: Casa Batllo
Sight Location: Barcelona, Spain (See walking tours in Barcelona)
Sight Type: Attraction/Landmark
Guide(s) Containing This Sight:

Walking Tours in Barcelona, Spain

Create Your Own Walk in Barcelona

Create Your Own Walk in Barcelona

Creating your own self-guided walk in Barcelona is easy and fun. Choose the city attractions that you want to see and a walk route map will be created just for you. You can even set your hotel as the start point of the walk.
La Rambla Walking Tour

La Rambla Walking Tour

One of the main streets in central Barcelona, La Rambla is popular with tourists and locals alike. Connecting the city’s old port with Plaça de Catalunya, it is filled with cultural and historic landmarks, as well as many terraces, restaurants, shops and street artists. Spanish poet, Federico García Lorca once said it was “the only street in the world which I wish never ended.”

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Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.3 Km or 1.4 Miles
Montjuic Walking Tour

Montjuic Walking Tour

Montjuic is a hill in Barcelona which offers a variety of great attractions of historic, cultural, and architectural value. Here, you can watch a spectacular water show at the Magic Fountain of Montjuic, visit the place where matadors faced the bulls in the past, and explore the ancient Montjuic Castle with its breathtaking views.

A convenient start point, Placa d'Espanya is the second...  view more

Tour Duration: 3 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 5.0 Km or 3.1 Miles
Barcelona Introduction Walking Tour

Barcelona Introduction Walking Tour

According to legend, Barcelona was founded by mythological Greek hero Hercules on one of his expeditions, when his boats were hit by a storm. The first 8 boats managed to escape without damage, but the 9th one was lost at sea. Hercules found his lost friends some days later on the coast, all safe and sound. The crew was taken by the beauty of the coastal landscape, and so they decided to stay. It...  view more

Tour Duration: 3 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 5.7 Km or 3.5 Miles
Gothic Quarter Walking Tour

Gothic Quarter Walking Tour

A walk around the Gothic Quarter is a journey through time to Barcelona’s oldest history, going back to times of Roman rule; in fact, the typically Roman grid plan is still visible today in the quarter's layout. Only a few roads are open for car traffic, so there will be little in the way of enjoying the many narrow, atmospheric streets filled with superb food, high-quality architecture,...  view more

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 1.8 Km or 1.1 Miles
Barcelona Shopping Walk

Barcelona Shopping Walk

Set among the world's prime cultural destinations, Barcelona is en route to becoming one of Europe's top shopping spots as well. Fashionable designer stores are filling the city streets with each new day, from well-known international brands to local start-ups. High-end shopping like Cartier, Luis Vuitton, Tiffany, etc., can be found over at Passeig de Gracia, which also takes you past...  view more

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.4 Km or 2.1 Miles
La Ribera Walking Tour

La Ribera Walking Tour

La Ribera is a culturally rich, historic area of Barcelona’s Old Town; somewhat less touristy than the Gothic Quarter (which one should really visit as well) and quite unspoiled, authentic and pretty. Centuries ago, it was a very well-to-do neighborhood inhabited by aristocrats, merchants, wealthy sailors, and Jewish money-lenders. Today, it is regarded as the Soho of Barcelona – a popular...  view more

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.8 Km or 1.7 Miles

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